This project shows the process of designing three technological alternatives revolving around the topic Food & Sustainability.
The presented design alternatives are HelloFarm!, FoodShare and GoLocal.
Semester group project (2017, 2nd semester of the bachelor, Interaction Design at Aalborg University)
Team: Andreas Solvang Fejfer, Andreas Winkel Sigsgaard, Emil Kongsgaard Guldager, Frederik Dalgaard Moroder, Lasse Stausgaard Jensen and Marcus Herlev Lorentzen.
With the rise in global warming and increasing levels of pollution and CO2-emission due to the production and processing of food, it is essential to investigate the possibilities within the study of interaction design, of how technological solutions can be used and applied to provide possible solutions that promote sustainable food.
We started off examining the problem context of the topic by brainstorming areas of focus connected to food and sustainability.
The opportunity to be able to inspire and encourage people to make a positive, conscious change was appealing, and based on this we stated 4 exploratory questions to further investigate;
As a result of researching these questions, the main focus was pointed towards what benefits could come from more people buying local and organic food.
3 different existing solutions, all dealing with the chosen area of focus, were then examined to help serve as inspiration for the generation of new solutions.
How can a technological solution help to improve the mutual connection between consumers and local producers and potentially reduce the environmental impact both in terms of production and food waste?
Based on the focus originated from the problem context and the inspiration from the three researched existing solutions, we held a solution brainstorm.
This was followed up by sketching different storyboards to show various scenarios of how the solution could work.
This resulted in 3 generated solutions; HelloFarm!, Foodshare and GoLocal.
The first concept, HelloFarm!, is a web based solution, with primary focus on the social aspect of the vision. The basis that helped shape this concept, derived from the idea that a more transparent and trustworthy system in the long run would re-establish this well-informed and connected population, where consumer as well as producer will partake in local agricultural activities.
The concept is intended for people who would like insight into how their food is grown, processed and distributed. These people can book visits to selected farms, where the local farmers will take them on a trip telling them about the different aspects of agriculture. The foundation of the concept is the experience itself of each new exposure to farm issues and processes, as well as the social benefits it provides for both consumer and producer.
The second concept primarily came from a desire to minimize the wasting of unprocessed food, and as a way to connect citizens within small communities. FoodShare focuses on homegrown food producers, who might e.g. have an apple tree, a greenhouse or a kitchen garden. For the people who produce homegrown seasonal food it can be difficult to predict the amount of food that is going to be produced and sometimes it can be more than the household can consume before it expires. Instead of the food going to waste, this concept would provide the opportunity for those people to share it with others in similar situations.
GoLocal is an app based solution that is assigned to the idea of a better connection between the consumers and local producers. This could minimize the environmental impact through a reduction of CO2 emission due to the partly removal of distribution and processing in the Life Cycle of Food. GoLocal focuses not only on the connection between producers and consumers, but consumers to consumers as well. In Denmark, road sale stalls are often seen along the road, where private residences sell vegetables and fruits from their own growth. GoLocal provides the opportunity to visualize these locations and makes them easily accessible to the buyer.
By comparing the 3 concepts with each other and how well they addressed the set criteria, GoLocal were chosen as the concept to progress with.
Second ideation phase
Following the selection of GoLocal, we held a second ideation phase to generate potential designs of the app.
A brainstorm session resulted in a list of possible supportive features to implement.
After having discussed the different functions in relation to the context of our solution to selected those we thought would be most useful.
This resulted in a basic sitemap creating an overview of the app.
To determine the fundamental design of the app, we made low fidelity prototypes through sketches of the different design suggestions of the app.
After agreeing on a fundamental design, we build a high fidelty prototype of the app in Adobe XD.
Three specific functions of the app are presented, of which we explored three ways of creating different design alternatives.
Choosing a product
One of the key features within the app, is the ability to choose a product. We investigated 3 different ways of enabling this. The first is the Virtual producer, with whom you can have a dialogue. The producer provides feedback, depending on what the request is.
The second alternative that lets the user find his desired produce, is an illustration of a farm, with different categories of produce depicted with an illustration and a sign. From here the user can choose, what produce he wants to search for or go back and choose a different category.
The third alternative for choosing produce consists of six boxes, each containing subdivisions within produce of the main categories Fruits, Berries, Mushrooms, Vegetables, Nuts and Herbs.
choosing a route
Another key feature of the app is choosing the route.
The first way we tried to visualize available products is through a list. The list consists of a number of entries sorted by the distance of the detour from the original route.
In the second alternative, the user is sent back to the map after having inputted a destination and filtered the products. The map will now be updated to only show the wanted products, along with a route from the user’s current position to the destination.
List & Map view
This alternative is a combination of the two preceding alternatives, though some aspects have been changed or adapted in an attempt to create a better and more coherent design. It consists of a list in the top half and a map in the bottom half.
Reviewing a shop
In the first alternative, the user throws apples into the food producer’s basket by swiping them. The more apples the user swipes to the producer, the better the rating.
1 to 5 rating
The second alternative is a more common way of rating as it is used by e.g. Facebook, Amazon, Tripadvisor, Ebay and more. Instead of swiping apples into a basket, the user rates the shop with one to five apples(for food quality) and one to five stars(for overall experience).
Like or dislike
The third and last alternative to the review page is a more simple solution. In this alternative, the user only has to choose between a happy or sad apple.
The final prototype consists of the second presented alternative for each function. The artboards, their interrelations and a simple walkthrough of the app is presented.
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